Directed by Paul Shapiro
Written by Caitlin D. Fryers and Randall Sullivan
Reviewed by JP Andrika
Bridget (Aubrey Peebles) is an in coming high school Freshman. This year she is convinced to join a myriad of School clubs, but what she really desires is to be a Cheerleader. Despite trying out she doesn’t make it. Resentment runs deep. At this School perfection isn’t only encouraged, it’s expected.
Eventually, Bridget becomes one of the Bobbies, a social clique led by head Cheerleader, Kelly (Sarah Dugdale). The friendship is short-lived when Kelly is horribly murdered by a Kitchen Knife. Suspicion falls on local outcast, Nina (Morgan Taylor Campbell), a former Bobbie member picked on for dressing up Goth. Nina narrates much of the movie.
In 1989, a town in California was rocked by the murder of a popular high school girl. If you are my age, you probably remember A FRIENDSHIP TO DIE FOR on repeat airings, Based on a true crime. The previous film starred Tori Spelling as the victim and Kellie Martin in the Bridget role. Kellie Martin plays the lead investigator in this new version.
This time around we are given different types of views. The victim Kelly is given more depth here. In the previous film she is a complete bully with no redeeming values; Not very realistic. We also see more of her home life and her parents reaction to her death and the Court case.
What is missing from this remake is home life with Bridget. We are given snippets here and there, but the fact she is poor is really lacking which was a big factor in why she wanted desperately to be popular and fit in. Her Sister is also omitted (a key scene in the previous film which I won’t spoil.) Bridget is reprimanded by her principal for not being the best when she doesn’t make the Cheer squad and scoffs at her, “Do you think you can cry and get that job offer in the real world when you don’t make it?”
A common criticism of this film is that little to no work was put in to resemble the 1980’s. It’s a made for TV movie so given they can only do so much, I won’t fault them despite the film’s somewhat washed out milky look.
Overall, I felt the movie was alright; Not as campy as the original. People loved Tori Spelling’s bitchy performance in the first film, but here the character is more grounded in reality. Not perfect, but not the over the top bitch on wheels like the first film. More sympathetic.
“I wasn’t perfect…” Nina muses. “Who really is? Not Bridget. And not Kelly.”